March 9, 2007 § 11 Comments
There is a phrase that is caught in the branches of my sleep-deprived brain, where it has rustled and flapped for most of the day. I’ve laboured to remember its source, but the morning’s caffeine molecules have long since faded and without them, I am nothing.
Wait, was that it? (Blinks.) It was.
Oddly, it’s from a book about the Tarot; specifically, a book about the Thoth deck, which I am fascinated by but do not own. Crowley, rampant egotist that he was, took it upon himself not only to reinterpret the cards, but to give them new names: thus, Strength became Lust; Justice, Adjustment; and Temperance, Art. The flapping phrase concerns the meaning of the Art card, which is, essentially, “living the ordinary life in an extraordinary way.”
If there is a thread in me, an instinct that verges on belief, it is this. I mean, what other life is there, and what other way is there to live it? The trick is understanding the difference between the life and the living. I (if I am) am as common as dirt, a descendant of peasants who rest in unmarked graves. The experiences I allow myself to have, though–the chance encounters, the happy accidents, the strange synchronicities–well, surely, this is where the art lies?
Of course it is. Silly.
So, you can have your fragile, fleeting genius and all that it implies. Me, I’ve got living to do.